Rewarding Members of the Resistance Movement in Belgium in the Context of Public Diplomacy of the USSR during the Cold War
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Rewarding Members of the Resistance Movement in Belgium in the Context of Public Diplomacy of the USSR during the Cold War
Annotation
PII
S207987840021114-4-1
Publication type
Article
Status
Published
Authors
Kseniya Sak 
Affiliation: Alexander Solzhenitsyn House of Russia Abroad
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow
Abstract

The article deals with the problem of implementing the Soviet policy of “soft power” in the conditions of the Cold War on the example of awarding Belgian participants in the anti-fascist Resistance by the Soviet government combat awards. On the basis of official documents identified in the RGANI, GARF and RGALI, it is shown what role the Soviet “award diplomacy” played in the construction of a collective memory of the Second World War in Belgium and the joint participation of Belgian and Soviet citizens in the Resistance. The initiators of the awards for Belgian citizens formally and informally were such quasi-public organizations as the Soviet Committee of War Veterans, the Union of Writers of the USSR, the Soviet Committee for Cultural Relations with Compatriots Abroad (Rodina society). At the same time, the candidates were coordinated with the national communist parties, which could also initiate the award. The final decision-making took place at the level of the Central Committee of the CPSU, in agreement with the Soviet embassy. During the Cold War period, 4 actions of rewarding the Belgians took place, as a result of which 23 members of the anti-fascist Resistance received Soviet military awards. Among them was the national Belgian heroine — the Russian emigrant M. Shafrova-Marutaeva. As a result of the analysis of award campaigns, the author comes to the conclusion that, being part of a complex of memorial events, they served as an effective tool for broadcasting the official Soviet policy of remembrance of the war to the West. The representation of the image of the winner in these actions emphasized the symbolic legitimacy, political authority and even moral superiority of the Soviet Union in the international arena.

Keywords
public diplomacy, awards, collective memory, resistance movement, World War II, Belgium, M. Shafrova-Marutayeva, M. Jalil, Soviet Committee of War Veterans, Union of Writers of the USSR, Soviet Society for Cultural Relations with Compatriots Abroad
Received
12.01.2022
Publication date
30.06.2022
Number of characters
48729
Number of purchasers
1
Views
78
Readers community rating
0.0 (0 votes)
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